What you should know about Osteoarthritis of the Knee
The new FDA approved treatment for knee pain
Currently, an estimated 27 million people suffer from osteoarthritis, making it one of the most common causes of disability in the U.S.
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, osteoarthritis of the knee is one of five leading causes of disability among elderly men and women, Osteoarthritis of the knee is characterized by a degeneration of the knee cartilage.
Osteoarthritis. also known as “wear and tear” arthritis, is a common problem for many people after they reach middle age.
Pain from osteoarthritis of the knee is usually worse following activity, especially overuse of the affected knee. Stiffness can worsen after sitting for prolonged periods of time. Symptoms generally become more severe as osteoarthritis progresses Some of the signs and symptoms associated with knee osteoarthritis include:
- Decreasing range of motion
- Muscle weakness and atrophy
- Baker’s cyst (a harmless but sometimes painful collection of joint fluid behind the knee)
What is knee osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of knee arthritis.
Between your bones, two C-shaped pieces of meniscal cartilage act as “shock absorbers” to cushion your knee joint. Osteoarthritis causes cartilage to wear away.
Symptoms. Pain and stiffness are the most common symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. Symptoms tend to be worse in the morning or after a period of inactivity.
What causes knee osteoarthritis?
Many factors increase your risk for developing osteoarthritis.
Many factors increase your risk for developing osteoarthritis. Age. The ability of cartilage to heal itself decreases as we age. Osteoarthritis typically affects people middle-aged and older.
Heredity. Certain genes have been linked to osteoarthritis. Inherited traits, such as being bowlegged, knock-kneed, or double jointed, can also put you at greater risk for the disease.
Weight. The more you weigh, the more stress you put on your knee joints.
Injury. Previous knee injury, such as a sports injury, can lead to osteoarthritis later in life.
Overuse. People in occupations that involve repeated kneeling or squatting, or heavy lifting and walking, are vulnerable to repetitive stress injuries in the knee. This makes them more likely to develop osteoarthritis.
Other illnesses. If you have had other problems with your knee, such as gout, knee infection, or Lyme’s disease, your risk for osteoarthritis increases.
Supartz was the first type of natural knee injection approved by the FDA in 2001.
Viscosupplementation therapy is a procedure involving the injection of gel-like substances (hyaluronates) into a joint to supplement the viscous properties of synovial fluid. This procedure has been shown to be highly successful in alleviating pain associated with osteoarthritis and is covered by most major medical insurance providers, including Medicare.
At Center for Joint Health, we have elected to utilize Supartz as our injectable of choice for our viscosupplementation therapy program. Supartz consists of a mixture of sodium hyaluronate that is found naturally and extracted from rooster combs.
We also utilize a breakthrough piece of medical equipment at our facility called fluoroscopy. This is a very important point because fluoroscopy allows our medical staff to look inside your joints in real time with the latest imaging technology while administering any of our minimally invasive injection procedures. This instrument helps to insure that the injected material is introduced to the exact point intended and therefore provides the best possible outcome from each injection. That’s why if you have tried any type of pain reduction injection elsewhere without success we may still be able to assist you as your original injection may have never wound up in just the right place.
Are You a Candidate?
- Do you wake up with stiff knees?
- Do your knees hurt when going up or down stairs?
- Do you frequently take medication for knee pain?
- Do activities you enjoy cause pain around the knees?
- Have you been told you need knee replacement surgery?
Schedule an appointment today with the Center for Joint Health!